Upon completion of this chapter you will be able to:
• Write the Key Verses from memory.
• Summarize the strategy of the enemy in relation to God.
• Summarize the strategy of the enemy in relation to the nations.
• Summarize the strategy of the enemy in relation to unbelievers.
• Summarize the strategy of the enemy in relation to believers.
KEY VERSES FROM THE ARTICLES OF WAR:
Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the Devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour;
Whom resist steadfast in the faith, knowing that the same afflictions are accomplished in your brethren that are in the world. (I Peter 5:8-9)
This lesson presents an overview of the general strategies of our enemy, Satan. In the next
lesson, you will be given an overview of "The Battle Plan" of God. In later lessons, after you have been armed with your spiritual weapons, you will be given more specific counterstrategies to overcome all the evil plans of the enemy. But first, you need to understand the general
strategy of the enemy in relation to God, the nations, unbelievers, and believers.
THE ENEMY AND GOD
Satan’s original sin was that he wanted to be like God, so his present power and activities are directed primarily against God. All of his other activities and his very nature are viewed as stemming from his original rebellious ambition.
For example, Satan’s attack on the first man and woman, Adam and Eve, was really an attack on the character and control of God (Genesis 3:1-5). Satan also induced Cain to murder Abel in opposition to God (I John 3:10-12). You can study every attack of Satan recorded in Scripture
and you will discover that it is actually an attack on God and His activities and nature.
Satan is in direct opposition to God in every activity and quality of nature. For example, God is love whereas Satan is hateful and promotes hatred (I John 3:7-15). God is life and creates life while Satan promotes death and destruction (Hebrews 2:14).
Satan not only opposes God and His nature, but he also opposes God’s program. He denies the existence of God (Psalms 14:1-3), promotes lies (Ephesians 2:2; II Thessalonians 2:8-ll); and is behind false religions, the occult, and cults with their false doctrines and practices. Satan’s
religious system results in false teachers, prophets, and "christs." You will study more about this later as you study "Spiritual Wickedness In High Places."
Satan will reach the climax of his rebellion against God and His plans during the time of "The Final Battle" discussed in the last chapter of this course. Despite these evil strategies, Satan and his hosts of demonic powers are no threat to our Almighty God.
THE ENEMY AND THE NATIONS
Satan is called the "god of this world" which includes men who are not believers and demonic angels. (II Corinthians 4:4) He offered the nations to Jesus during the temptation of Christ, and our Lord did not dispute the legitimacy of the offer. He simply refused to rebel against God in submitting to Satan’s way of obtaining the rule (Matthew 4:8-10).
Satan uses his demons to influence and deceive the nations, leading the leaders and people astray from God. This is why there are cruel dictators and ungodly political systems in many nations. It also accounts for the wars and divisions between the nations. Satan especially influences
leaders against the Church and God’s chosen people, Israel. He also works through governments to hinder the spread of the Gospel.
During the tribulation period Satan will actually direct the affairs of a group of ten nations
through the Antichrist. After the second coming of Christ, Satan will be bound for a thousand years (Revelation 20:3). Upon his release, he will deceive the nations one last time to assemble them against Jerusalem and God (Revelation 20:7-10). In the end, every kingdom of earth and the Kingdom of Satan will become the Kingdoms of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ.
THE ENEMY AND UNBELIEVERS
The enemy has a very powerful strategy operating against unbelievers. He blinds their minds to the Gospel (II Corinthians 4:3-4) and snatches away the truth of the Gospel when they do hear it so that no response will occur (Luke 8:12). As a result, the Gospel sounds foolish and irrelevant to those who are lost in sin (I Corinthians 1:18).
Satan also snares many unbelievers in false religions (I Timothy 4:1-3) and leads them to walk according to the "course of the world" which is the philosophy of the age. That philosophy may vary from generation to generation and culture to culture, but it is always creature-centered and
creature-promoting rather than God-centered. Satan is constantly sowing the seeds of rebellion (sin) in the hearts and minds of unbelievers.
One of the purposes of the Holy Spirit is to war against Satan for the souls of unbelievers. The
Holy Spirit works to convict men and women of their sinful rebellion against God (John 16:7-
THE ENEMY AND BELIEVERS
When you accept Jesus Christ as Savior, it certainly does not mean the battle is over! You have
won one major confrontation when you are saved, but in reality, your intense struggle has only
You will learn many specific strategies of Satan as you continue to study this course and are armed with spiritual weapons and mobilized to enter enemy territory. But all of these attacks can be summarized in four major areas. In the life of a believer Satan attacks:
THE WORD OF GOD:
Satan will cause you to question the Word of God and will add to, take from, or distort the
Scriptures. Remember that this happened in the very first temptation of Eve. This is why it is
important for you to study and understand God’s Word so you will not be deceived by these
YOUR WORSHIP OF GOD:
Satan’s original rebellion involved his desire to be worshiped, so he especially targets the
worship of believers. He will try to prevent you from worshiping or lead you into false or fleshly worship.
YOUR WALK WITH GOD:
Satan attacks your personal walk with God. He accuses and slanders you, tempts you to engage in the works of the flesh, to be occupied with the world, and to rely upon your own human
wisdom and strength. If Satan can win territory in your personal walk with God, it will make it easier for him to defeat you in the next area which is…
YOUR WORK FOR GOD:
Satan also attacks your work for God. He will try to deter you from accomplishing God’s will
by persecution, disaster, discouragement, prayerlessness, and busy involvement with the cares of the world. Satan also tries to affect your work for God by infiltrating the Church with false
teachers and disciples (II Corinthians 11:13-15; II Peter 2:1-19; Matthew 13:38-39).
While God sows good seed through your ministry, the enemy sows tares which are the "sons of
the wicked one.” He promotes division within the Body of Christ trying to affect the work of God and His purposes in your life and ministry.
SO—WHAT CAN YOU DO?
Satan’s strategies are certainly varied and powerful as he works against God, the nations, unbelievers, and believers.
Having spent the last four lessons studying the enemy, the spiritual forces of evil, enemy
territory, and strategy, you may be a bit overwhelmed at this point. But as you will learn in the
next chapter, God has a "battle plan" far greater and more powerful than any scheme of the
You are now ready to study that plan and then be armed with your spiritual weapons and mobilized for battle.